Monday, 29 October 2018 20:15

Satellite services group joins Global Satellite Coalition

Rate this item
(0 votes)

Australia’s Satellite Services Working Group of the Communications Alliance has joined the Global Satellite Coalition, a grouping of the world’s leading satellite industry associations.

The move was announced at the Satellite Next-Gen Focus event in Sydney on Monday by SSWG Chair and Communications Alliance chief executive, John Stanton, and GSC representative, Dr Bob Horton.

The SSWG is a group of 19 satellite services-focused companies active in the Australian market.

Dr Horton said the inclusion of the SSWG would enable the GSC to leverage the local resources and expertise present in companies based in or serving Australia and its neighbouring countries.

Stanton welcomed the move, which he said would help keep satellite players in touch with global counterparts and in tune with “fast-paced developments occurring in many different markets around the world”.

The GSC was created in 2017 and the membership of its Associations spans the globe, reflecting the total coverage of satellite through the combined support of hundreds of member companies based in every world region.

The founding partners of the GSC include Abrasat (Brazil); APSCC (Asia Pacific); AVIA (Asia Pacific) – former CASBAA; ESOA (Europe, Middle East, Africa, CIS); SIA (USA), and GVF (global).

The GSC has set as its priority to advocate the role of satellite in achieving complete connectivity from contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and the Broadband Commission’s connectivity objectives to realising the Network of Networks required for 5G.

In addition, it works to ensure that satellite services are an essential element of national broadband strategies, universal service programs and disaster preparedness efforts.


The much awaited iTWire Shop is now open to our readers.

Visit the iTWire Shop, a leading destination for stylish accessories, gear & gadgets, lifestyle products and everyday portable office essentials, drones, zoom lenses for smartphones, software and online training.

PLUS Big Brands include: Apple, Lenovo, LG, Samsung, Sennheiser and many more.

Products available for any country.

We hope you enjoy and find value in the much anticipated iTWire Shop.



iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.


Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired in 2020. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

Related items

  • Comms Alliance welcomes reduction in telco complaints, TIO responds, MacTel comments

    Australia's Communications Alliance has welcomed the continuing trend of reduced volumes of telco-related complaints to the industry ombudsman.

    Figures released today by the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) report show that complaints in the three months to end-March 2021 were down 6.1% on the same quarter last year, and also slightly lower than the previous quarter – building on a trend of improvement during the past 12 months.

    The report also showed a significant quarterly drop of 38% in complaints from customers about difficulty in contacting their service provider.

    Communications Alliance CEO, John Stanton, said the drop in complaints was a welcome sign that telcos are consolidating the improved service levels they have rebuilt since the disruptive early period of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    {loadposition alex08}

    “Everyone knows it is frustrating when it is hard to contact service providers in any industry to get an issue dealt with – so the evident strong improvement in telcos being reachable and available to deliver good customer service is very welcome,” Stanton said.

    So, what did the TIO have to say?

    The TIO says phone and internet complaints remain steady, with seasonal comparisons showing decline.

    Between January and March 2021, residential consumers and small businesses made 30,393 complaints about phone and internet services. This is a decrease of 0.3% compared to the previous quarter, and 6.1% compared to the same quarter last year.

    The TIO's Quarter 3 (Q3) 2020-21 Complaints Report published today shows mobile continues to be the most complained about service type, accounting for 35% of all complaints. This is the highest proportion in the last five quarters.

    Problems with inadequate fault testing has emerged as an issue for all consumer types. This is when a provider fails to troubleshoot a problem with a consumer, or the consumer is not satisfied with the provider’s fault testing.

    A highlight for this period shows a continuation of a downward trend in the number of complaints about consumers being unable to contact their provider. This problem decreased by 38% compared to the previous quarter.

    The overall proportion of small business complaints remains steady, with a slight decrease from 17% of total complaints in the previous quarter to 16% in Q3.

    Other insights include the appearance of Foxtel in the top ten providers this quarter, replacing M2 Commander.

    While overall complaint volumes have decreased over the last two quarters, complaints returning as unresolved from the telcos has been higher than previously observed. This quarter shows over 20% of referrals in Q2 returning as unresolved.

    Commenting on the Q3 results, Ombudsman Judi Jones said, “Complaints reflect the consumer experience of their phone and internet services and interactions with their telco. While the decline in overall complaints is a positive sign, the increase in complaints coming back to us unresolved is concerning. We will continue monitoring this trend and working with the telcos on the problems as they emerge.”

    Macquarie Telecom believes today’s latest TIO report shows telcos have failed to address systemic issues at a time when virtual communication is more important than ever; and that more issues remain unresolved shows the TIO’s intervention can’t stop consumers from being left stranded.

    Luke Clifton, MacTel's Group Executive said: “The telco industry’s woeful reputation on customer service continues, with more than one complaint every five minutes, of every single day in the first quarter of the year. As lockdowns continue to plague millions of Australians and virtual communication becomes even more important for how we live, connect and work, telcos have simply not stepped up to fix long-overdue systemic issues.

    “The fact that more and more complaints are reported unresolved is very concerning – it means that even when the TIO steps in, issues are not being resolved and consumers are left stranded.

    “Reliance on telecoms will keep rising, and the industry needs to take a hard look at itself, increase local skills development and training so their teams are better equipped to deal with complaints in the first place, and improve their technology so they can address issues before they even affect consumers.”

  • Telcos respond quickly to resolve concerns about selling practices

    Communications Alliance today welcomed the prompt, cooperative action taken by telecommunications providers, working with the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman’s systemic investigation on ‘Helping telco consumers sign up to the right phone and internet products.’

    Commenting on the release of the TIO’s report, Communications Alliance CEO, John Stanton said: “No consumer should ever feel pressured to sign up to something they don’t want, and they should always have access to clear information on what they are considering.

    "There is always a Critical Information Summary available that provides consumers with a clear summary of terms and conditions, and we encourage all consumers to look at that document before making purchasing decisions.”

    “As noted in the TIO’s report, there are extensive consumer protections in place, including requirements in an enforceable industry Code about telecommunications selling practices and on providing Critical Information Summaries. The 2019 revision of the Code also added strict requirements for credit checks.

    "While it is always disappointing when errors are made or providers do not comply with their obligations, there are two strong regulators in this space – the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and the ACCC – and the TIO is able to both resolve specific consumer complaints and inform the regulators of what they are seeing."

    {loadposition alex08}

    Stanton continued: “We were pleased to see that, once made aware of a problem, RSPs took proactive steps to resolve it, even beyond the complaints raised through the TIO. This included contacting all impacted consumers, issuing refunds and changing forward practices.

    “This report shows the valuable role the TIO can play in educating industry and consumers. Some of the reported investigations were not about direct wrongdoing on the part of the telco, but instead found ways that telcos and consumers could better communicate,” Stanton concluded.

    The Communications Alliance also notes "while the TIO has an important role as the independent dispute resolution body, the TIO’s systemic investigations are not done under the same processes as a regulatory investigation, and thus may not have gone through the same legal checks and balances and are not required to be finalised at the time of publication.

    "Finally, as highlighted by the TIO, it is also important that consumers take the time to look at the terms and conditions information that is provided to them, to think about whether a product or service is the right one for them, and to consider their options.

    "This is true not only for purchasing from telcos where there are extensive consumer protections in place, but also from non-telco retailers who also sell devices but aren’t subject to the same regulatory scrutiny."

  • Comms Alliance says 'decreasing rates of telco complaints continue' in latest Q1 2021 report

    It's reportedly only a "small decrease" in complaint rates, but at least complaints are down, and not up.

    Communications Alliance has published its Complaints in Context report for the January – March 2021 quarter (PDF link), showing a small decrease in complaint rates for the participating providers.

    The report details the complaints received by the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) per 10,000 Services in Operation (SIO) for participating service providers for each quarter.

    This index allows comparison of the customer service and complaint handing performance of providers, regardless of their size.

For all participating service providers, there were 6.9 complaints per 10,000 SIOs, a decrease from the 7.0 ratio in the October – December quarter. Individual provider results were mixed, with some falling and others remaining steady or rising. As report participants change each year for the October – December quarter, the overall  ratio is not directly comparable to prior years.

    {loadposition alex08}

Communications Alliance CEO John Stanton said: “The ACMA’s recent publication of data about complaints lodged directly with telcos showed a 40% decrease over a two-year period up to the October – December quarter. While the decrease in the rate of complaints made to the TIO for this this quarter was not nearly as strong, telcos continue to work to improve customer service.”

The industry-driven report is published by Communications Alliance, using complaints data provided by the TIO and SIO data supplied by participating providers.

    Per the Telecommunications Consumer Protections (TCP) Code, participants are updated annually to reflect the top 10 complaint recipients in the most recent TIO Annual Report, in addition to voluntary participants.

Communications Alliance encourages any RSP interested in joining the index to contact them.

    The full report is here.

  • Optus, FraudWatch thwart thousands of online security threats over 10 years

    Australia’s second largest telco Optus says that in 10 years working together with global anti-phishing and online brand protection company FraudWatch they have taken down more than 3,171 phishing emails, brand abuse, fake mobile apps and fake social media sites.

    The detections have been made from a combination of proactive detection by FraudWatch and from reports from Optus and its customers.

    Andrew Sheridan, Optus Vice President Regulatory and Public Affairs, said criminals imitate well-known brands to trick customers into divulging information which could result in financial loss.

    “Every malicious operation that is shutdown helps protect customers from cyber criminals,” said Sheridan.

    “During our decade of working with FraudWatch, we’ve seen a significant reduction in incidents, which means criminals are targeting Optus customers less, and confidence in our brand increases.”

    {loadposition peter}

    Sheridan says that by using its proprietary detection technology to hunt the Internet for cyber threats, FraudWatch then typically takes down most malicious, phishing websites within three hours of detection - and through its international network and 18 years of experience, FraudWatch keeps abreast of cybercrime activity both in the clear and dark net to respond to ever changing cybercrime trends in order to protect their clients, and their clients’ customers.

    Trent Youl, FraudWatch founder and CEO, said, “FraudWatch is proud to have been working with and protecting Optus and their customers for more than ten years.

    “Cybercrime is forever evolving and the fact that we have been a trusted partner for Optus and their large customer base is testament to the commitment of our staff to deliver effective services delivering real value for our clients, and demonstrates that Optus is committed to protecting their customers.”

    As a connectivity provider, Optus says it recognises scam calls are also a concern – and so does Government - and ACMA has worked closely with telcos and peak body Communications Alliance to develop recently-released rules and pilot initiatives to reduce the scale and impact on Australians of scam calls.

    Since ACMA’s “Reducing Scam Calls Code” came into effect, Optus says it has successfully blocked more than 35.2 million scam calls.

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's (ACCC) Scamwatch reports that last year Australians lost a reported $176.1 million to scams, up by 23.1% compared to 2019

    Sheridan encouraged Australians to acknowledge the alarming statistics.

    “These numbers send a clear message to all Australians: be vigilant. Optus will continue to derail scams and do what we can to keep you safe, but if in doubt, don’t click. Only use channels of communications to all your providers – telcos, banks and other services – that are established and secure.”

  • ACMA releases telco complaints-handling performance data for Dec quarter, CommsAlliance happy, ACCAN concerned

    ACMA has published its telco complaints-handling data for the quarter ended December 2020, with the Communications Alliance noting complaints have dropped 40% of a 2 year period

    The information has been collected under the Telecommunications (Consumer Complaints) Record-Keeping Rules 2018 each quarter since September 2018.

    ACMA explains its redesigned interactive report shows how telcos manage customer complaints, and notes this data can be viewed by quarter or financial year.

    Naturally, the Communications Alliance says it has welcomed the ACMA’s publication of telecommunications complaints data for the October – December 2020 quarter, showing a significant decrease in the number of complaints made to telcos over the past two years, but as you'll see below, ACCAN, The Australian Communications Consumer Action Network  is worried.

    {loadposition alex08}

    Communications Alliance CEO John Stanton said: “the ACMA’s data shows a nearly 25% decrease in complaints from one year ago, and a 40% decrease from the same period two years ago. This reflects the hard work telcos have been putting in to improve customer service, including through the challenges of COVID.

    “Industry strengthened consumer protections with the revised Telecommunications Consumer Protections Code which commenced in August 2019. Additionally, telcos have been working on innovative service offerings and with carriers to increase customer choices and improve the customer experience.

    “While there is always more work to be done, it is pleasing to see that industry’s efforts over the past years have had a positive impact, and we hope to see this trend continue,” concluded Stanton.

    However, as noted, ACCAN is concerned, stating the report "highlights the need for better complaints-handling from the nation’s telcos."

    “It’s great to see that the volume of telecommunications complaints from consumers has decreased by nearly 25% when compared to the same period last year,” said ACCAN CEO Teresa Corbin

    “However, the ACMA’s report also shows some worrying increases in the complaints data.”

    ACCAN states the ACMA’s telco complaints-handling performance data for the quarter ended December 2020 reveals that the weighted average days to resolve complaints increased 17.3% when compared to the same period last year. Additionally, there was a 6.3% increase in escalated complaints compared to the quarter ended December 2019.

    Corbin continued:

    “This latest data shows that it’s taking longer for telcos to resolve complaints and that more consumers are having to escalate their complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman.

    “Telecommunications are an essential service. When consumers are having phone or internet issues, they need to have these complaints resolved quickly and on the first try.

    “It should not take nearly 20 days to resolve a consumer complaint, as was the case with one of the telcos highlighted in the ACMA’s report. It’s simply not good enough.

    ACCAN also highlighted the dramatic increase in complaints per 10,000 services in operation for Fixed-Line voice services, which increased 84.2% from the same period last year.

    “We know that it is primarily older Australians who are still heavily reliant on Fixed-Line voice services. For these customers, having a landline phone outage can leave them cut off from family and vital assistive services.

    “This is a serious concern, and we will be liaising with the ACMA to find out more about this issue," Corbin concluded.




Guest Opinion

Guest Interviews

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News